Saudi Arabia Monetary Authority To Issue Own Cryptocurrency Next Year

News | November 22, 2018 By:

The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA), the central bank of the country, will issue its own cryptocurrency next year.

In an interview with Saudi Press Agency, Mohsen Al Zahrani, Head of Innovation at the SAMA, said that their cryptocurrency, which is being developed in collaboration with the central bank of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), will be launched in mid-2019. Al Zahrani added that SAMA is studying the possibility of the new digital currency rollout among all banks.

On Monday, UAE central bank governor Mubarak Rashed Al-Mansouri said the cryptocurrency had entered design phase and that the release would be determined by how quickly Saudi Arabia is able to complete research necessary to its formation.

Al-Mansouri noted that the cryptocurrency will not replace a certain bill, adding that it will be a new payment tool used by banks and not individuals.

The two central banks started working on the planned cryptocurrency in December 2017 to use the power of blockchain technology to create a digital currency that would help facilitate cross-border payments between both countries. At the time, Al-Mansouri described the project as a ‘digitization’ process of what is done between central banks and other banks.